"The Ball's Pond Banditti" on the cover of Larks!, 1894

The Ball's Pond Banditti, a gang of juvenile delinquents from Ball's Pond Road in London, created by George Gordon Fraser, appeared in the weekly comic Larks! in 1893-94. Led by Ticko Scuppins of the Ball's Pond Clothing Stores ("From 'enceforth I hemilate the doin's of the Robber Chiefs of hold! Sussiety shall tremble at the name of Bloodwing!"), the gang also included Gorger Pain the doctor's youth, Piggy Waffles of the grocery establishment, Lurcher Geeson the butcher's boy, Sweppy Titmarsh from the rag shop, and Bocco the bold bloodhound. They caused havoc around London landmarks like the British Museum, the Albert Memorial and the Greenwich Observatory, and it can be argued they were the ancestors of characters like the Bash Street Kids.


  • Denis Gifford, Encyclopedia of Comic Characters, Longman, 1987, p. 15
  • Peter Hunt, International Companion Encyclopedia of Children's Literature, Routledge, 2004, p. 243
  • John Henry Stape, The Secret Agent: Centennial Essays, Rodopi, 2007, p. 158

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